Alex Bowman makes most of big break with Daytona 500 pole

Alex Bowman makes most of big break with Daytona 500 pole

While discussing the challenges of running the oldest auto in the Cup series, the Ford Fusion, the longtime team owner spilled the beans to Racer.com in Daytona on Sunday that "we'll have a new body next year".

Martin Truex Jr. (+1400) is the reigning series champion after posting five wins to claim the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup in 2017. His break came when Dale Earnhardt Jr. found nine Xfinity Series races for Bowman to drive for JR Motorsports. Bowman did get three events a year ago, two Xfinity Series races and a Truck Series race, but the rest of his time was spent in a simulator while he hoped Hendrick would come through with a job.

The qualifying races were critical for teams running a limited schedule by providing them the opportunity to race their way into the Daytona 500. The field of 40 cars will be set Thursday night by the Daytona 500's unique qualifying races, called Duels, where drivers who have not already won a starting spot on the front row will be placed on the grid based on their finish in one of the two 150-mile Duel races.

Sunday's Advanced Auto Parts Clash on FOX Sports 1 eclipsed qualifying coverage for the Daytona 500 on the FOX broadcast network, if only fractionally.


This season, NASCAR is allowing fewer crew members over the wall during pit stops. And in that haste, there comes waste.

His nickname is Bowman the Showman, yet that did little in helping Alex Bowman to get Rick Hendrick to remember his name. My career had a lot of ups and downs, and I've been able to lean on my past experiences a lot to make me better and to better prepare myself for this job. Then there's a whole list of other quality candidates who pose a threat to win: Keselowski, Harvick, Chase Elliott and many others. I think there's going be some give and take there. William Byron won the championship last season but has graduated to Cup and won't be defending his title.

Like you didn't expect this? "If you want action on a racetrack, look no further than the Daytona 500".

NASCAR's biggest day, however, has seen a different driver in Victory Lane frequently in recent years. Ryan Reed won this race last winter. So no, this isn't a bold prediction - if anything, it's closer to a guarantee.

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